Press Release 56 18.3.99

Judicial Review Further to today’s decision by the Building Societies Commission to confirm the takeover of Birmingham Midshires Building Society by Halifax plc the only remaining option for SOBS is to ask for a Judicial Review on the basis that as a High Court action is pending against Midshires the decision by the Commission is “Ultra Vires”, - beyond it’s legal powers. SOBS reserves it’s position on taking further action until it has had time to consider the Commission’s decision in full and will be taking informal soundings within it’s membership. Bob Goodall says “SOBS will have to take into consideration whether in light of the current threat to the Bradford & Bingley it is prudent to divide our resources and energies by carrying on the fight to save mutuality at Midshires” Note to the editor The High Court action was launched to challenge the Midshires decision not to hold a second Special General Meeting to consider 7 resolutions requisitioned by 200 members on the basis that it deemed the resolutions to be “frivolous or vexatious”. The resolutions were designed to protect mortgage customers, to protect savers and to protect Midshire jobs. One of the grounds on which SOBS asked the Building Societies Commission not to confirm the takeover was that not all the “rules of the society had been fulfilled” ie the Second Special General Meeting pertinent to the whole takeover process had not been granted and that was the matter that we intended the High Court to make a determination on. The delay in serving the summons (already sealed by the High Court) was to allow us time to raise money to be represented by legal counsel or to seek free legal counsel or for me as a layperson to prepare the documents myself.

Bob Goodall Co-ordinator "Save Our Building Societies" campaign